Maps and mapping tools can be useful to:
monitor changes in land use;
plan and design project elements with the community/beneficiaries;
evaluate changes in land use through comparison.
1. This tool can be used periodically to monitor changes.
2. It is a monitoring tool that is accessible to many.
3. It is less time consuming than other monitoring tools. Many different interventions can be monitored using the one tool.
4. This tool can give a broad overview of the evolution of the community. It is useful for monitoring community forestry/watershed management.
5. Conflicts over land allocation can be avoided or addressed before projects begin.
6. By using this tool communities can see, some for the first time, the linkages and inter-relationships of land use patterns.
7. Maps and mapping can be a multipurpose tool, used first for planning, then for monitoring, then for evaluation.
This tool uses purchased maps, maps produced by the group and/or aerial photographs to assist with community land use planning and monitoring of changes in land use.
Time: depends on the ability of the community to assimilate and learn to use this tool, whether for planning or monitoring.
Expenses: aerial photographs may be expensive if not readily available. Purchased maps can be used, or the community can draw maps themselves (see Drawing and Discussion Tool 2) in which case expenses are minimal. Good quality paper should be used, especially if the maps that are drawn by the community and are to be used on an ongoing basis.
Training: mimimal. Some familiarity with maps. The facilitator must also have the ability to involve the group in the process.
1. Introduce both the concept of maps, mapping, and/or aerial photographs, and the purpose of the exercise to groups of 5-7 persons. (These small groups can, perhaps, be composed of representatives of different groups within the community.)
If this tool is to be used for planning, discussions of the various options vis-a-vis land use or project activities can be either drawn in on the map/photograph or overlayed.
If this tool is to be used for monitoring, accomplishments should periodically (for example, after each season) be indicated on the maps/photographs.
If this tool is used for evaluation, a comparison of maps and/or photographs will be most useful.
2. If using aerial photographs or maps, common landmarks need to be identified first (local names for lakes, rivers, roads, buildings). Other areas should be identified relative to landmarks.
An overlay which sketches areas of importance can be used on an aerial photograph, (communal grazing lands, private farms, state forest, etc.)
3. If mapping with the community/beneficiaries, there are a number of different ways to use this tool. For example, people can (separately or in groups) draw their own maps of the community, and these can be compared and synthesized into one large map. This can be especially useful if different strata of the community are involved, as different perceptions of land use are elicited; a discussion regarding these differences can sometimes help the community to resolve problems before they arise.
4. For micro-farm planning, separate maps can be created by individual farmers (for either planning, monitoring and/or evaluation) and then combined on a larger community map.
5. It is important to use good quality maps or paper, and keep them in a safe place for future reference.
Aerial photographs may be difficult to obtain, and/or expensive to buy. They may also be difficult to read and interpret.
A comparison of different individual's maps may bring out feelings of inadequacy, or an unwillingness to acknowledge certain assets.
Conflicts may arise if inequities become apparent, or old hostilities are rekindled.
A cross section of the community is required to validate the overall community perceptions.
One person may dominate or direct drawing if mapping is done by the group as a whole.
Rocheleau (1988) suggests that a series of mapping and field visits at the beginning of and at regular intervals throughout the project can be a way of monitoring progress, problems and new opportunities in agroforestry.
In Nepal, aerial photographs have been successfully adopted for land-use planning in communities. Once landmarks are identified this approach has been easily accepted.
Farmers' (communities) own records are used to monitor and analyse the effects of forestry interventions in order to:
judge whether project recommended forestry techniques (new species, new methods of management, etc.) are cost beneficial to the farmer (community);
test and compare old practices and new practices;
define future research and development priorities for improving the technology;
provide an "early warning system" for new, locally untested technologies.
1. The community uses its own information sources to see and judge the desirability of recommended changes.
2. The tool can be used for all types of forestry interventions, such as agroforestry, compound plantings, fodder banks, community woodlots, small-scale forest based enterprises.
3. The tool keeps track of inputs (seed, fertilizer, tools, labour) and outputs (crop yield increases, polewood, fodder, secondary forest products).
4. The tool monitors what the farmers (community) perceive as important inputs/outputs.
5. The tool provides "on-farm" research information which can, through comparison, help identify future research priorities.
6. The tool provides site and situation specific information in a consistent format.
7. The tool does not necessarily require literacy.
The tool utilizes a farm or community record booklet that is designed to suit a specific area and situation. Choose the monitoring indicators with the beneficiaries. Distribute staff-designed booklets to the relevant beneficiaries after briefly training them to keep the records. The booklet can contain simple step-by-step procedures to monitor information and analyse results.
Time: some. Meetings between beneficiaries and field staff to discuss the idea. Design and modification of the booklet. Distribution of booklet. Periodic follow-up (with extension visits). Meetings between beneficiaries and field staff to synthesize and analyse information.
Expenses: production and copy costs of booklet.
1. Facilitate discussions. Get beneficiaries to identify their purpose in monitoring; the overall method that will be appropriate for the purpose and the situation; and the terms of measurement (for example, bags or kilos; labour measured by half-day or by the hour).
2. Design a record keeping booklet (this may be only one page, depending on the situation) using the information obtained in Step 1. Obtain feedback from beneficiaries throughout the design process.
An adaptation of the "Sample Farm Record" might be suitable for use with farmers. Even farmers who do not know how to read and write can keep records of the time they spend working in various activities. By making one mark for every half-day spent doing specific jobs, a farmer can compare time worked on the control plot with the time spent on the test plot.
3. Produce the appropriate number of record keeping booklets and distribute them to beneficiaries with a short familiarization session.
4. Follow-up and evaluate the utility of the tool, providing advice as required.
5. Meet periodically to synthesize, compare and discuss the results.
The results may be somewhat general if the tool is used to assess technologies which are being used over a wide area.
There should be space in the booklet for recording unexpected factors.
The booklet should be designed, produced and analysed with beneficiaries so that they can do it themselves in future.
World Neighbors (Rugh 1987) gives a sample of a farmer's record and states that it is especially good for pre-literate beneficiaries.
This monitoring tool is used to:
assist and improve nursery administration. It can also provide a record of experiences for the future;
retain valuable information about new nursery and disease control techniques, sources of seeds, etc.;
keep track of seedling distribution for future follow-up;
keep cost accounts.
1. This tool helps beneficiaries learn nursery practices.
2. This tool can help identify nursery research needs.
1. This tool can help establish a protocol for good nursery practice.
This tool is a record book which is maintained by either the community nursery committee or their chosen representative. It records what the beneficiaries feel is necessary. The information may provide cost accountability, a record of technical information or species preferences.
Time: meeting to decide which information to record, and to choose the person responsible for maintaining the nursery records.
Expenses: minimal: a sturdy book, lined but without columns.
1. Meet with beneficiaries, and the nursery committee to discuss the 1. of nursery information, to decide which information to collect, and to choose a person responsible for record-keeping.
2. Set-up the record book with the nursery committee. Design it according to the information needs discussed at the meeting. (Some examples of nursery record books are given below.)
3. Provide follow-up and assistance as needed.
4. Have periodic larger meetings to provide feedback to beneficiaries.
SOME EXAMPLES OF NURSERY RECORD BOOKS
Field staff should ensure that they do not force their own project information needs on beneficiaries. Staff must inform beneficiaries of the uses and benefits of different kinds of information. Staff should also review what each type of information has provided other communities.
A number of community nurseries in Sudan did not maintain the fairly complicated nursery record books that had been supplied by the project. They did however, record distribution by species and cost, because the nursery committee needed to account for the money they collected.
The communities also had a "running history" of the nursery in the back of the book. This history included the names of those who had volunteered labour, and the dates of major work projects (sowing seeds, germination, weeding, etc).
Community financial accounts will be useful to:
monitor the finances of small-scale forest based, community managed enterprises;
provide accountability to the community;
assist in evaluating the inputs/outputs.
1. This tool helps beneficiaries identify financial problems quickly.
2. This tool helps beneficiaries make management decisions.
3. This tool develops beneficiary book-keeping skills.
This tool utilizes basic single-entry book-keeping techniques (receipts, input/output columns, etc.)
Time: meetings with beneficiaries and field staff to discuss
information needs, and how to use this system.
Expenses: the file case, accounts book, stamps, office equipment.
Training: some training needed for the person that is chosen to be responsible for keeping accounts.
1. Meet with beneficiaries and discuss which information is needed, what inputs and outputs are expected, where information will come from, and who will be responsible for the accounts.
2. Design a book-keeping system to yield the needed information.
3. Follow-up and assist record keeping for ongoing accounts, balancing and reporting.
The book-keeping should be kept as simple as possible.
The VITA (1983) have described a single entry book-keeping system that has been successfully used in small community enterprises (see Annotated Bibliography).
The main purposes of this to tool are to:
provide a framework for analysis of a given situation;
encourage input from many people;
"brainstorm" potential solutions (opportunities) and constraints (threats);
gather information useful in evaluation.
1. Field staff have found this tool easy to explain easy to use, and easily understood by community members.
2. This tool can be used for: problem analysis, monitoring, and evaluation.
3. This tool provides a framework for balanced discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of a given situation.
4. Open, in-depth, focused, and frank discussion is facilitated.
5. This tool allows for ALL ideas around a specific issue to be discussed.
6. This tool can record changes in attitude and perception if done in a focused and consistent manner.
A simple categorized framework allows groups to analyse and/or evaluate issues.
those project elements that have worked. Things that one is proud to say about the project/situation/activities.
those project elements that have not worked so well. Times when things could have gone better.
ideas for how Weaknesses can be overcome and Strengths can be built upon.
the constraints that exist and diminish the range of Opportunities.
Together these make up S.W.O.T. analysis. For each heading, the group defines, discusses, and records as many factors as possible.
Time: approximately two hours will be needed to explain the tool to participants, and to do the exercise. Time is also needed to synthesize and analyse the results.
Expenses: minimal: some large paper or newsprint and big pens; or a blackboard and chalk.
Training: minimal: facilitator must be able to understand the tool and synthesize discussion into a few words, making sure the idea is properly recorded.
1. Produce worksheets. List the categories and leave space to insert the main points of discussion. An example is:
2. Decide which issue is to be discussed and the method of presentation in a small group meeting.
3. Discuss the uses and benefits of the tool with the larger group.
4. It is best to go through all strengths first, then all weaknesses, and so on.
5. Some points may be discussed at length before consensus is reached. Write-up each point only after consensus has been reached.
Sensitive subjects may arise. The facilitator may wish to change topic and return to sensitive point later; this can eliminate possible problems.
Some of the group may dominate discussion. The facilitator can ask specific persons for input, or the exercise can be done with different focus groups.
Synthesizing discussion into a few words may be difficult. The facilitator should always check to see that the audience agrees with the reporting.
An agroforestry project in Sudan used and liked this tool when they were introduced to it in a workshop setting. They decided to use it as a basis for community evaluations to see if the extension messages were appropriate. They used S.W.O.T. Analysis instead of questionnaires because it was more informal and more participatory. The community groups were quick to catch on and there were lively discussions. Field staff received constructive feedback on their performance and were able to adapt their approach.
An effective tool for community/group problem analysis and evaluation. The objectives of popular theatre are to:
express feelings of a group rather than an individual artist regarding social contradictions;
emphasize participation rather than presentation, process rather than product;
exploit the potential of drama as a "rehearsal for life" because it enables people to imagine themselves in different settings and to explore the distance between the personal intention and the restrictions on action in the "real" world;
provide a way for the community to "tell their own story" historically, or currently (for problem analysis), or to describe a process of regional development in a certain field (evaluation);
express community concerns, overcome fears and build confidence;
leave the audience with "unresolved tensions" as a result of which they will take action to seek solutions.
1. Through this tool the community defines its own reality in a dynamic and culturally acceptable manner.
2. This tool is multipurpose. It can be used for problem analysis, evaluation and monitoring. It can be used often throughout the project to build a story. It can be used to present the "results" of analysis, and have those results verified by a wider audience. It can be used to present information to other communities, other decision makers and/or other interested parties (using video, slide tapes or tape recordings).
3. This tool encourages a high degree of community/beneficiary participation.
This is a tool to develop the consciousness of rural populations through the use of of local media such as dance, song, drama, mime, etc. Popular theatre is different than traditional theatre because rather than mimic the culture, it often seeks to show the contradictions. It attempts to leave the audience with questions to which they will seek answers. The presentation ought to be in a common local art form. It should bring people together and facilitate reflection.
The process links experience, analysis and imagination in an attempt to clarify participants' understanding of their society so that they can change it.
Time: for a fairly elaborate presentation this tool requires some time. If the community is familiar with their chosen form of communication it may not require much time at all.
Expenses: minimal if locally available costumes and props are used. If recording is done, (photographs, slides, video, tape recording) it can be more expensive.
Training: Training in the use of this method is recommended. Experience has shown that once a group is presented with the idea, they enthusiastically proceed. An outside theatre group may be used to facilitate presentation if local expertise is not available.
There are four basic steps in one approach to producing popular theatre:
1. TAKING IN - Create a space in which members of the community can feel free to talk openly of experiences or problems which are painful, difficult or taboo to discuss. Most groups begin by exploring their own experiencies, and later, as they acquire the research skills, they begin to study experiences of others.
2. ANALYSING THE MATERIAL - Analysis is done in the form of a discussion between the community and the animators/actors/ facilitators. In this discussion the collected material is examined in its wider social, economic and political contexts. This approach can bring to light the relationships between different problems, making contradictions clear.
3. CREATING MATERIAL - Convert the major issues which have been identified into entertainment. This entertainment can be in the form of a series of workshops, or a play. It can also be studied by others in an effort to increase their understanding. Activities can be structured into entertainment by:
(a) experimental activities - Ask people to experiment, to take on the role of a group or community that is unfamiliar to them and to feel and reflect on the experience. For example, an urban group may be asked to experiment as members of a rural group, or men may be given the role of women. When people take on a very unfamiliar role they are "forced" to learn and explore new feelings and experiences.
(b) reflection - Mold the new thoughts and emotions that have been learned in the experimentation into stories or scenes. This can be done by incorporating the ideas into the narrative element of the emerging drama or shaping it into a discussion between the experimenting group and the audience. Reflection leads people into the next and important stage... "rehearsal for life" where participants have the opportunity to create a scene where people change and new perceptions of a situation emerge. This is called the drama of intervention.
(c) interventionist drama - Ask the participants or audience to intervene and solve a problem or resolve a contradiction. By resolving the contradiction, the drama reaches a new stage, a new drama. This new drama may have new contradictions built into it and so the process becomes continuous.
All of these stages can take place in a natural setting. They do not require a traditional theatre nor all the trappings of a theatre such as scripts, sets, costumes, lighting.
4. ORGANIZATION - A vital part of popular theatre is organization. In order for this process to take place a collective structure has to be developed. It is in this collective structure that the analysis is rooted. This structure ensures that the community participates in all the decisions central to the work. It also safeguards and controls both the direction and the outcome of the process. The collective organization guarantees that resource people/animators and writers remain in touch with the group's feelings and vice versa.
It may be difficult to record the process and the outcome especially if there is a lot of audience response. It can also be expensive if video, photographs, etc. are used.
Actors have to "create" quickly, based on audience response.
The entertainment value should not outweigh the learning value.
Popular theatre groups exist throughout the world: Sistern in Jamaica, Kamirithu in Kenya, Proshika in Bangladesh, and PETA in the Phillipines.
In a popular theatre activity used for problem identification in Kake, Cameroon, the villagers identified a conflict between three villages over land availability and distribution, and agriculture methods.
In Zimbabwe, a role play which was used to stimulate analysis of declining forest resources was very successful. Some community members personified and acted as "the most important trees" in the community, while others acted as "threats to the trees". Three scenes were done: the home, the field, and the forest.
The role playing in Zimbabwe paved the way for discussions of: the current status of trees and threats to tree resources (drought, overpopulation and mismanagement), the most important trees and their value to different groups, and the disappearance of trees over time. The play was completed in a very short time, and received lively response. The group agreed that they had created something that they felt good about, and had enjoyed themselves in the process.
In one country in West Africa, where there was a strong tradition of extemporaneous theatre, extensionists used a play that had actors in the roles of a governor and an extension agent who were sent to a village to learn of the community's development priorities. The two actors pretend to arrive in the village. They call upon the real village members to help them learn what different village groups want (leaders, women, landless, etc.). Soon a large number of villagers "acted" the part of villagers and discussed village priorities from the perspective of different user groups. Extension agents found this an enjoyable and effective tool for starting participatory assessment. They felt it could be used for monitoring and evaluation as well.